Post Mortems

Resident Alien Boss on [Spoiler] Learning Harry's Secret: 'It's Going to Change Everything' in Season 3

Resident Alien Season 2 finale

The following contains spoilers from Resident Alien‘s Season 2 finale.

Could Patience, Colo. become the battle ground for an alien race war? From the looks of Resident Alien‘s Season 2 finale, anything is possible.

In Wednesday’s closing episode, multiple storylines threatened to change the town forever. For starters, D’Arcy finally found out what Asta was hiding when she learned Harry’s true E.T. identity. Harry and Joseph came face-to-face in an ominous meeting that foreshadowed their futures, as Harry used the Greys’ pod to send his alien baby Bridget back home. Plus, after discovering that McCallister was planet Earth’s only hope, Harry turned himself in so the two of them could get better acquainted (and possibly work together to stop the Greys?).

And that doesn’t even scratch the surface. Mike and Liv sniffed out the government conspiracy unfolding around them, while the Hawthornes experienced their own set of horrific and downright shocking extraterrestrial encounters.

Below, creator Chris Sheridan talks to TVLine about the finale’s jam-packed hour and biggest moments, including the casting of the legendary George Takei and what he hopes to see in the upcoming third season.


TVLINE | How did the appearance of Dark Horse Comics founder Mike Richardson come about?
CHRIS SHERIDAN | I remember being in the weeds of Season 2 and getting this email from Mike Richardson, who related this story to me that I never forgot. The story was what he saw when he was a kid. So I knew that he had had this experience and when I was trying to come up with a finale, I knew that I wanted to have Deputy Liv be able to speak her truth about aliens. We had developed this concept so that she can be on a documentary and finally tell her truth, and own the fact that she believes in this thing that she’s afraid of people knowing.

Then I got the idea that it would be very cool and relatable to actually show pieces of this documentary, but actually use real interviews with real people talking about their experiences, and make Deputy Liv one of these people. Everyone else is a real person. It would help make Liv’s piece more relevant and feel more real because it actually is matched up with real people. As soon as I got that idea, I remembered the email that Mike had sent, and so I reached out and asked if he would be willing to tell the story. And I had spoken to him about this story already because there were a couple of situations in Season 2 — one in Episode 2X08 where Liv remembers seeing this UFO as a kid, and later in Episode 2X13 where we see the UFO again — but I patterned the look of that UFO off Mike’s recollection of what he saw when he was a kid. So I had already talked to him at length about this experience at that point. So I reached out to him again and said, “Would you be willing to tell this story on camera?” He was open to it. It was important to me that we got people who hadn’t really told their story before publicly.

Resident Alien Season 2 finaleTVLINE | Will the documentary continue in Season 3?
It’s a great question. I loved how great it worked in 2X16. It was a lot of work and a great job by Nastaran Dibai (he’s one of our writers who also directed those sequences) and a great job from our editor, Adam [Bluming], cutting those together. And Robert McNeill, our producing director and executive producer, put a lot of time into bringing those people together. I have a newfound respect for documentarians who do this all the time. I’m so happy it worked as well as it did. I’d love to do something like that again. I don’t know if it’s going to be that specifically, but I love that this show has the ability to do things that are outside the box. What I loved about it is combining true stories into a scripted, serialized television show and meshing them together so it all feels like it works, and the real stories, I think, help elevate the reality of the story that we’re telling. I think the show will continue to push the limits and try to do things that are out of the box, but it remains to be seen if we do the documentary interviews again.

TVLINE | Can you tell me a bit about how George Takei came on board?
We’re huge fans of George Takei, and we knew we wanted to do a Grey alien and knew it was a great opportunity for stunt casting. We had some ideas of people we wanted to get for that. When we were shooting the scene in episode 2X13 with Harry standing there and talking to the alien, we had not yet casted the alien. But that night, I remember having a conversation with Alan [Tudyk] saying, “You know, we’re thinking about going out to George Takei,” and he loved that idea. So I said, “Look, we haven’t hired him yet, but throw in some stuff on your side of the conversation (like the ‘oh mys’ and stuff like that), just in case we get him.” So all of that stuff that we see Harry saying is stuff that Alan did before we even knew we had George Takei for sure.

Then when we finally did get George, we showed him the stuff that Alan did, and were able to back into some of those sequences. Based on the things Alan said, we tried to come up with a framework for lines that George could say that would work into Alan’s side. In a perfect world, you have both actors there at the same time and they’re playing off each other. But A) we hadn’t casted George yet, and B) it’s a Grey alien, so they wouldn’t have been there at the same time anyway. It ended up working out and cut together really great. And George was fantastic when we recorded him. He was totally open to doing some of those funny bits about talking about how he was “freezing his Grey d–k off,” and I was feeding him these lines and he was just laughing. I couldn’t believe he was saying this stuff.

Resident Alien Season 2 Part 2 D'ArcyTVLINE | D’Arcy finally finds out the truth about Harry, and her nonchalance about it seems just so… D’Arcy. How will pulling her into the inner circle change things for Harry and Asta moving forward?
It’s going to change everything. That’s the glory of going into Season 3 with something like this is it totally changes the dynamic. Up to this point, it’s just been Asta and Harry figuring these things out. Adding D’Arcy changes everything because it allows Asta to take a step back. She doesn’t have to be the one that holds Harry’s hand for everything. D’Arcy also brings in this new energy. Where Asta is getting wary of all the threats, you have this new energy of D’Arcy coming in there wanting to know all this stuff. I think she’s going to come at this with a childlike enthusiasm. At the same time, Asta has worked herself into a place of trust with Harry over the last year and a half. D’Arcy doesn’t quite trust Harry the way Asta does. Now that D’Arcy knows that Harry is an alien, I think there’s an element of D’Arcy that isn’t ever really sure what he’s up to. So it’s going to throw a nice wrench into that dynamic moving forward and change the energy, which is great in the third season. It gives you a whole bunch of new stuff to play with.

TVLINE | Mike knows something fishy is going on, but he’s not sure what it is. With him open to at least entertaining Liv’s hunches, how will that affect her investigation into Peter Bach’s death?
He knows something’s going on, but we’re not yet at the point where he believes there’s aliens. Mike is pretty closed off to the thought of aliens, which to me is so funny because he’s pretty open to the thought of a lot of other things. Here’s a guy who openly thinks Sasquatch lives in Seattle, and he’s talking about fairies and mermaids and all this stuff, but aliens? Come on, you’re crazy! Even if he doesn’t believe in aliens, something’s going on. There are people impersonating officers out there. This is a big conspiracy. Now Liv does believe there are aliens. Mike is more likely, “It’s not aliens, but there is a government conspiracy happening here. We need to see this through.” So they both have the same goal to uncover what it is, they’re just going into that search believing different things. That’s what’s going to drive them forward.

Resident Alien babyTVLINE | We see that Ben and Kate have each had their own extraterrestrial experiences, and that the aliens have abducted their unborn baby. What’s on deck for the Hawthorne family next season?
The thing I wanted to show with this and want to continue to show is that this isn’t necessarily a special circumstance. We have hinted at the fact that something’s been going on with Ben since he was a kid. We have a lot of conversations in the writers’ room about what’s going on in Patience for the abductions to happen here, and the reality is nothing! What’s so insidious — from the people who believe in this type of thing, and I’m one of them — is that it’s not just in one town. This is something that people believe happens in every town. These abductions are not something that’s happened a couple of times. This is happening all of the time and no one can do anything about it, which then gives everyone a feeling of helplessness. So there’s nothing special about Patience. We’re just chronicling one of many stories of this happening.

People have these abduction memories or they don’t have the memories. But stuff comes out in hypnosis, and then through hypnosis, they’re able to remember these traumatic events of being taken. And there’s so many different stories about this and a lot of evidence. It’s really harrowing. We want to lean into that this year, and possibly even see Ben and Kate hypnotized at different times to take them back to their experiences in the ship. And then after the hypnosis be able to say, “You won’t remember any of this.” But as we’ve said before, and as happens with these abductees, even if you don’t remember it, it still manifests itself in a different way.

Resident Alien Season 2 finaleIt’s a truth that you’re holding inside that you’re not accessing outwardly, but you are accessing it inwardly and it is affecting you in different ways. So, Ben was abducted since he was a kid and doesn’t remember it, but he’s lived his life afraid and doesn’t know why. [Communion author] Whitley Strieber was abducted his whole childhood. He finds out later in life and by the time he finds out, suddenly the fact that he’s been spending his life writing about monsters makes a lot of sense. It’s very insidious, and even if the people who are being abducted don’t remember it, it is affecting their lives either way. This is what’s going to happen to Ben and Kate.

TVLINE | McCallister is “Earth’s only hope.” Will she and Harry be teaming up next season, and if so, what is that partnership going to look like?
We’re still figuring some of that stuff out. We just started Season 3, so we’re trying to figure out where she fits in. One of the things we do know is that she is going to be working with Harry, and it’s another reason Asta can sort of step back. A lot of times Asta has had to hold Harry’s hand in a lot of these situations and teach him how to be human and push him forward to try to save the Earth. But now that McCallister is there working with him, Asta will feel like she has a little breathing room. With McCallister and Harry, yeah, they’re going to be working together. McCallister has a lot of things at her disposal from a military standpoint that Harry can get involved in and use. They’ll be working out of a brand-new military base we haven’t seen yet. There’s a lot of fun stuff ahead.

TVLINE | The alien baby was such a central focus this season, but Harry sends it home. Will we ever see Bridget again?
How could you have seen the last of the alien baby? That thing is so cute! I don’t want to give away how we’re going to see the baby again, but we will definitely see that baby again in Season 3.

Resident Alien Season 2 Alex BorsteinTVLINE | Any calls going out to Alex Borstein for Season 3?
I would love to have her come back. When I talked to her last year, she said that she’d love to come back if she can. There’s definitely a few good stunt casting opportunities this year, which we’ve talked about. One of them is to try to find a way to have Alex back. One of them is to try to find a way to get Taylor Blackwell back, who played Liza, Harry’s daughter. But yeah, I’d love to work with a lot of those people again, Alex especially. The stuff she did with Harry in Episode 3, going on that date together, it was just so funny. We ended up with Alex Borstein and Alan Tudyk sitting across from each other at a table adlibbing and improving dating scenes. We have 20 minutes of incredible footage we couldn’t use of just hysterical, ridiculous things that they were saying to each other. I’d love to find a way to revisit some of that.

TVLINE | We know the Greys are on Earth, but Harry also left a message for the Alpha Draconians. Might he find himself caught in the middle of a giant alien race war?
It’s a great question. I think there’s a lot more going on with aliens on our planet than any of us know, and I think as the seasons go on, Harry’s going to uncover more and more of that. Right now, what he’s mostly concerned about is the Greys and trying to figure out what they’re up to. The Grey hybrid alien Joseph is going to be a deputy in town and will now keep an eye on Harry. As we as we saw in Episode 16, Harry doesn’t leave the planet and he ends up staying to try to save the Earth, but one of the things he has to figure out is, “What is the Greys’ plan?” So now, he and McCallister are a little consumed with that. But I’ll say we will see other aliens as well as the Greys in Season 3.